Study on teacher education raises concerns about apprenticeship model

November 12, 2012

"It was the hardest thing I ever had to do emotionally and mentally," states Nathalie, a university student undergoing teacher training and whose experience is highlighted in a Concordia University researcher's study on the student-to-teacher transition. In her university classroom, Nathalie is stimulated and encouraged to "approach teacher education through inquiry, development of interdisciplinary perspectives, collaboration with students and teachers, and ongoing reflective writing and visual expression." But she is stifled in her practicum, where her "sponsor-teacher" -- who is meant to be imparting wisdom, support, and guidance -- questions her authority and abilities. "The scope of Nathalie's emotional experience raises critical concerns about the apprenticeship model and the value of field experience," says the Concordia researcher, whose study brings into question whether such job placements are the most productive approaches to preparing a new teacher for the classroom. Concordia News Release | Abstract